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English Composition 101
Formal In-class Essay 2
Write an analytic essay in response to the following prompt.
On page 2 of her essay “The Mysterious Life of Birds Who Never Come Down,” Helen Macdonald interrupts her discussion of the swift and offers readers two paragraphs about her childhood. What might the purpose of these paragraphs be? What effect do they have on the rest of the text?
Your essay should consist of five paragraphs, including an introduction that orients a reader who hasn’t read Macdonald’s text and that offers a clear, contestable, and specific thesis statement. Remember to use topic sentences that make clear what the focus of each paragraph is and that make clear how each paragraph is connected to the thesis statement. Remember, too, to pull important keywords through your essay to unify your paragraphs and reinforce your thesis. Finally, avoid making arguments that involve assumptions about the reader, such as that Macdonald is trying to make her essay “relatable” for the reader.